Interview Hasse Fröberg

“The songs I've written were already completed in my head”

(March 2011, Text by Pedro Bekkers, edited by Peter Willemsen, picture by Miranda Bril)

At the beginning of March I watched an outstanding performance (see review) of Hasse Fröberg and Musical Companion. While travelling to the city of Zoetermeer, The Netherlands I didn't know that I was going to interview Fröberg for Background Magazine. A real surprise and I wasn't prepared at all, but being in the position to talk with a musician I admire, I couldn't let go.

What was the reason to start this side project?

Hasse Fröberg: “I've always written songs and when we were finishing The Flower Kings-album The Sum Of No Evil we had some songs left that were meant for that album. I definitely wanted to record these songs for a project of my own, so I kept them, but I didn't do anything with them, until... At one time I was at home playing my guitar and singing some lyrics to it, when a friend of mine came in and waited until I was finished. He asked me if I was playing a song for a new album. I knew the quality of the songs was good, but I just had to find out how they fitted together and if the balance between the songs was right. Today I'm quite happy with it. I think the dynamics and the tempos in the songs and sections make an interesting and entertaining experience... That was the start for the Future Past album.”

Was it hard to get the musicians for your solo album?

“In fact it was quite easy, I knew bass player Thomas Thomsson since we stayed at kindergarten and we have been playing in the past together with our drummer Ola Strandberg. (Thomsson told me that he once played in a metal band called Spellbound. On the internet I found out that both Strandberg and a guy called Fröberg were part of that band, PB) My first choice for a keyboard player was Kjell Haraldsson, who has played with many big names in the music scene. He's easy to work with since he can play anything you want him to play. As far as Anton Lindsjö, our youngest band member, is concerned, I know his parents who are both blessed musicians and I was impressed by the skills of this young guitar wizard, so I asked him to join us.”

Did the band help you out in writing the compositions?

“The songs I've written were already completed in my head, so I could tell all band members how I wanted it to be played. I wanted to reproduce the songs exactly that way, but concerning the solos I gave them total freedom to do everything that fits within the song's structure.”

Album 'Future Past'

Are you planning to release a new album?

“I've already some ideas, but the next album will definitely be a band album. I know these guys are talented musicians and I look forward to see what their input can be in future songs.”

What do you think of the amount of people showing up this evening? Was this the best show to date?

“When you see this as a new band I'm very happy. Many people showed up to watch our concert and I have to say that the Dutch people respond very well to our music. Yes, I think this gig was one of the best. However, the best show was back in Uppsala in Sweden, but this show certainly comes second.”

No offence, but when you should use 'Hasse Fröberg, the voice of The Flower Kings' in your promotional campaign, I think even more people would show up.

“Yeah, perhaps I should use the fact I'm a member of The Flower Kings. My fellow-musicians all have their side projects and play a lot. Therefore I guess that they have built a number of people following them and visiting their concerts. For me, this is my first and only thing I do outside The Flower Kings, I always used to stay in low profile, but now the time was right to show the people another side of me.”

Perhaps you're too modest to use The Flower Kings to promote yourself. In my opinion you have made a fantastic album and you performed great shows that will establish your name as an independent artist.

“Well, thanks. For us this is just the beginning and when I see the response until now, it tells me we're on the right track.”

More info about Hasse Fröberg on the Internet:
       review album 'Future Past'
       review concert 4-Mar-2011

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